Just as the Irish have St. Paddy's and the Scots have St. Andrew's Day, we can't forget about the Welsh National Day. As March approaches, the rolling hills and famous Welsh valleys of Wales begin to stir with anticipation. This small but mighty nation, nestled on the western edge of Britain, prepares to celebrate one of its most cherished traditions: St. David's Day. A day filled with pride, patriotism, and a touch of whimsy, St. David's Day is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in Welsh culture and experience the warmth and hospitality of its people.

What is St. David's Day?

a church and daffodils on St. David's Day in wales

St. David's Day is the national day of Wales, celebrated annually on March 1st. It honours St. David, the patron saint of Wales, who lived during the 6th century and played a significant role in spreading Christianity throughout the country. St. David's Day is a time for Welsh people to come together to celebrate their culture, heritage, and identity, as well as to pay homage to their beloved saint. In Wales, St. David's Day is marked by various traditional customs and festivities, including wearing daffodils and leeks, both of which are symbols of Wales. Parades, concerts, folk dances, and street parties are also common across the country, providing opportunities for communities to unite and showcase their Welsh pride.

When is St. David's Day?

people wave welsh flags on st. david's day in wales
St. David's Day falls on March 1st each year, commemorating the date of St. David's death in 589 AD. It is a public holiday in Wales, and while celebrations may vary in scale and scope, the spirit of St. David's Day is felt throughout the nation.

Preparations for St. David's Day often begin weeks in advance, with schools, workplaces, and communities organising special St. David's Day events and activities to mark the occasion. From crafting homemade decorations to rehearsing traditional songs and dances, there's a palpable sense of excitement in the air as the day approaches. So mark your calendars and join the festivities on March 1st as Wales comes alive with the spirit of St. David's Day.

What to do on St. David's Day in Wales

welsh people singing on st. davids day 2024
St. David's Day is like hitting the jackpot of Welsh celebrations – it's a day packed with more fun than a barrel of leeks and more excitement than a dragon spotting! If you're wondering how to make the most of this fabulous day, worry not, because we've got the ultimate guide to having a blast on St. David's Day:

  • Parade Party: Grab your daffodil hat don your leek necklace, and join the St. David's parade! This year it starts at 12 pm at the Boulevard de Nantes. During the St. David's Day Parade 2024, you can expect to see dancers, theatre groups and a lot of leeks. Why not join in the fun and wear a fun Welsh costume too?
  • Rock Out to Welsh Tunes: Get ready to dance like nobody's watching (or like everyone's watching because they totally are!) as you rock out to traditional Welsh music and dance. It's no secret that the Welsh love their singing, join in on the toe-tapping folk tunes to jig-inducing reels and you'll be moving and grooving all day long.
  • Eat, Eat, Eat!: St. David's Day is the ultimate cheat day for your taste buds. Dive into a bowl of piping hot cawl, indulge in some gooey Welsh rarebit, and top it all off with a sweet treat of Welsh cakes. Wash it down with a pint of local ale or a sip of Welsh whisky – because calories don't count on St. David's Day, right?
  • Explore Historic Hideaways for Free: Channel your inner history buff and embark as you explore all 16 CADW sites on St David's for free. From Castell Coch to Caerphilly Castle, you'll feel like you've stepped back in time as you uncover the secrets of Wales' past totally free of charge.
  • Crafty Creations: Get your creative juices flowing with hands-on workshops and crafty demonstrations. Whether you're learning how to play the harp, weaving a masterpiece on a loom, or carving your own lovespoon, you'll be crafting memories to last a lifetime.
  • Join the Community Craze: Dive headfirst into the community craziness with a smorgasbord of events and activities happening all around Wales. From bustling craft fairs to lively farmers' markets, there's never a dull moment when you're celebrating with your fellow Welsh enthusiasts.

So get ready to paint the town red (and green and white) as you dive into a day of Welsh wonder and merriment. Now that we've unpacked fun St David's Day activities, let's explore the 7 best places to. celebrate St. David's Day in Wales.

7 Places to Celebrate St. David's Day in Wales

1. Cardiff

a castle and dragon in cardiff on st. davids day
The capital city of Wales, Cardiff, is a vibrant hub of St. David's Day celebrations. Join the lively St. David's Day parade through the city centre, catch a rugby match at Principality Stadium, and explore cultural events at venues like St. David's Hall and Cardiff Castle.

2. St. David's

What better place to celebrate St. David's Day than in the city named after the patron saint himself? Located on the stunning Pembrokeshire coast, St. David's offers a range of festivities, including traditional music performances, craft fairs, and guided walks exploring the area's rich history.

3. Aberystwyth

visit Aberystwyth in Wales on St. Davids day
Although it's definitely not the easiest name to pronounce, Aberystwyth is a picturesque town with a strong sense of Welsh identity - perfect for celebrating St. David's. Celebrate St. David's Day here with concerts, poetry readings, and a bustling market showcasing local artisans and producers.

4. Conwy

With its medieval walls and picturesque harbour, Conwy provides a charming backdrop for St. David's Day celebrations. Join in the festivities at Conwy Castle, where you can enjoy traditional Welsh music and dance performances against the backdrop of this historic monument.

5. Swansea

visit Swansea Bay on St Davids Day
Situated on the beautiful Swansea Bay, this vibrant city hosts a range of St. David's Day events, from family-friendly activities at the National Waterfront Museum to traditional Welsh food tastings at Swansea Market. Don't miss the opportunity to explore the nearby Gower Peninsula, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

6. Llandudno

Llandudno in Wales for St Davids Day 2024
Known as the "Queen of Welsh Resorts," Llandudno is a delightful seaside town with a rich Victorian heritage. Celebrate St. David's Day here with a visit to the Great Orme, where you can take in panoramic views of the coast and participate in traditional Welsh festivities at venues like Venue Cymru.

7. Caernarfon

Steeped in history and surrounded by stunning scenery, Caernarfon is the perfect place to immerse yourself in Welsh culture on St. David's Day. Explore the imposing Caernarfon Castle, attend a traditional Eisteddfod competition, and sample local delicacies at the town's charming cafes and restaurants.

Buy Holiday Vouchers as a Gift this St. David's Day

visit a welsh castle on st. david's day in wales

Do you know someone who's always dreamed of celebrating St. David's Day in Wales? Perhaps they have Welsh heritage and want to get closer to their roots. Or perhaps they have family there that they haven't seen in years. Or maybe they just want a tranquil escape to the lush Welsh countryside. Whatever the reason, our holiday vouchers are the best-personalised gift to empower them to change their surroundings. Our holiday vouchers can be personalised in a few simple steps and sent to your hotel gift recipient in the post, via email or in person. Then, your gift recipient chooses exactly how to redeem their Hotelgift.